Thread: Simple question (this is pretty urgent, btw)
Right now I can tell you that it is THE original fantasy novel of which all others pale in comparison and are just cheap rip offs from. That it was written during the second world war and that it is not supposed to be evocative of any period of time at all, as it is a FANTASY novel about nowhere real. However it does evoke an image of pre-war middle england with it's servants (Samwise) and its incessant use of "dark" and "black" warriors as forces of evil.
Source: My own brain, despite it not being the most helpful info ever.
The Lord of the Rings is the grandfather of the modern fantasy novel genre, and as the Plastic Squirrel has said, it was written during WW II, actually during and on both sides of, from 1936 through 1949. (Use Tolkien's Forward to the Ballantine editions as a reference for dates and also for the postAuthorID's statement that it has no intended meaning and is neither allegorical nor topical).
The epic's time period can conveniently be set in the period before the last Ice Age (some 15000 plus years ago) and can be said to have taken place in the vicinity of Northwestern Europe. (This can help explain why none of the artifacts of the elven/dwarven/human civilizations have been found by archeologists and possibly why only humans remain (in any known numbers), all the other non-aquatic sentient beings, having either died off or gone into hiding. (Of course as the Plastic Squirrel has, time and again, been want to say, "Its not real for *****'s sake! Its only a book!!"; you should take the forgoing with a grain of salt.)
Hope this gives you a little more to work with.
Plastic: I have till next sunday to finish it, I have to hand it in on monday! :o
Hope this makes some sense. I'm not good at writing off the top of my head in a forum, like this.
Good luck on the essay.
I'd say that the time of LOTR is a dream-time, and its reality is a dream-reality, the reality of our "internal world". Tolkien himself compared all experiences to leaves falling on a leaf mould, and then fermenting to feed the germ of the story...
[Edited on 9/4/2002 by Eryan]
I agree with your comments about why Tolkien disliked allegory - he preferred the Elvish art of Enchantment, as he called it in his essay "On fairy stories"...
There is also more discussion on dreamlike character of fantasy worlds in the thread "Insult Tolkien?" in "Author"...
I will seek out that thread. It sounds like a topic I would really be interested in reading.
[...]I imagine the gap to be about 6000 years: that is we are now at the end of the Fifth Age, if the Ages were of about the same length as S.A. and T.A. But they have, I think, quickened; and I imagine we are actually at the end of the Sixth Age, or in the Seventh.
I got a 89 out of 100!!!
(just so happy, you can't believe it!)
Thanks again all!
Meet me in the tavern, the next round is on me!! cheers!
Any chance of you posting the finished essay anywhere?
I would love to post it here, but it's in Dutch. When I find the time to put it in English, I will, promise. Will take some time though...
I've nearly finished the translation of my essay, have about 5 pages yet to go. Will try to finish it this weekend, then I'll post it on Monday. Where can I post it?